My Workday

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“So what do you do?” We all get that question countless times throughout our lives. Many of us have jobs where our job title is merely the tip of the iceberg when it comes to explaining WHAT it is that we really do.

I’m not gonna lie, being a pastry chef is not a bad job. As one of my chef mentors used to say, “Look at us, how lucky are we? We get to make cakes for a living. There are a lot worse jobs. And there is no crying in pastry.”

But the kitchen is usually one of two extremes- excessively hot or freezing. You stand on your feet all day. Many of your non-pastry co-workers have no idea how much energy goes into creating an authentic baked item made entirely from scratch. Everyone thinks it’s a ball over there, on the pastry station, where you bake lots of fun cookies and cakes and pies every day! Pastels! Sprinkles! Sugary garnishes! Life is sweet.

Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy being a pastry a chef very much. There’s just so much more that goes into this job than people think.

In the wintertime, we are so busy at the restaurant that I come in early in the day and do production work. My pastry assistant comes in later, and works into the night plating desserts. It’s easier for me to go in early when the kitchen is quiet, and empty. I have complete access to every burner on the range. I can have the oven at a mellow, slow temperature for baking custards. I can spread out if I need to.

Here is the prep sheet for the current dessert menu. Sometimes I get a twinge of anxiety glancing at it! In addition to production, I am always researching and brainstorming for new items and special events, as well as managing and training the pastry team.

Sticky Buns
Brioche dough
Cinnamon filling
Brioche buns
Powdered sugar glaze
Caramel sauce
Toasted pecans
Vanilla bourbon ice cream
Spun sugar

Crème Brulee
Lemon custard
Bake brulees
Italian meringue
Pomegranate syrup
Pomegranate seeds
Hazelnut linzer batter
Bake linzers
Ginger ice cream
Candied ginger
Lemon chips

Entremet
Chocolate biscuit
Vanilla cremeux insert
Pine nut caramel
Chocolate mousse
Assemble entremets
Chocolate feet
Chocolate mirror glaze
Glaze entremets
Caramel sauce
Sugared pine nuts
Cocoa macarons
Chocolate tuile batter
Chocolate tuiles
Milk chocolate paint

Brioche Bostock
Brioche dough
Bake brioche loaves
Hazelnut bostock syrup
Hazelnut cream
Bake bostocks
Roast butternut
Butternut puree
Pastry cream
Butternut custard
Brown butter crumble
Caramelized hazelnuts
Squash seed garnish
Honey sage ice cream
Honey sage tubes

Kids Menu
Vanilla ice cream
Blondies
Assemble sandwiches
Hot fudge
Whipped Cream

Cheese Plate
Cut cheeses
Accompaniments

Ice Creams, Sorbets, Gelatos
Prepare
Spin every day

FOH
Lollipops
Petit fours

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